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The Central Eurasian State Capacity Initiative

PI: Erik Herron, West Virginia University

Year selected for award: 2018

The Central Eurasian State Capacity Initiative: Assessing Threats to Geopolitical Stability and Conflict along Russia's Periphery

Principal Investigator: Erik Herron, West Virginia University

Co-Investigators: Cynthia Buckley - University of Illinois at Urbana-Champaign; Ralph Clem - Florida International University

Years of Award: 2019-2023

Managing Service Agency: Office of Naval Research

Project Description:

The project is designed to evaluate state capacity as a domain in the peace-conflict spectrum in countries adjacent to hostile powers. It focuses on three key aspects of state capacity (healthcare, education, and elections) in three countries bordering Russia (Estonia, Georgia, and Ukraine). The project evaluates the objective provision of services, perceptions of quality, and the effect of these factors on citizens’ attitudes about legitimacy and the viability of the state. It enhances US national security by identifying potential vulnerabilities that could be exploited in the countries covered by the study, as well as other countries around the world, and proposes policies that would address legitimacy shortfalls and enhance geopolitical stability.

Select Publications:

Buckley, Cynthia J., Ralph S. Clem, and Erik S. Herron. 2019. An Assessment Of Attributing Public Healthcare Infrastructure Damage In The Donbas Five Years After Euromaidan: Implications For Ukrainian State Legitimacy. Eurasian Geography And Economics. 60 (1): 54-72.

Buckley, Cynthia, Ralph Clem, and Erik Herron. 2019. Attacks On Healthcare Infrastructure In The Donbas: Implications For Ukrainian State Legitimacy. PONARS Eurasia.

Buckley, Cynthia, Ralph Clem, and Erik Herron. 2019. "How to Stabilize Ukraine Long Term: Securitize Well-Being." War on the Rocks.

Buckley, Cynthia, Ralph Clem, Jarod Fox, and Erik Herron. 2019. The War In Ukraine Is More Devastating Than You Know. Washington Post. Monkey Cage

Owl in the Olive Tree Blog post:
National Security Implications of the COVID-19 Crisis: The Urgent Need to Build State Capacity